76 ranchero 351-400M

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  #1  
Old 01-02-06, 12:32 AM
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76 ranchero 351-400M

to begin.I am a carpenter. nuff said
I picked up a 76 Ranchero, 351-400m GT, first replaced the started switch on the steering column ( not teh key switch) to get her home. rebuilt teh motorcraft 2bbl carb, w/help from a (friend) who also stole teh metering rod from My carb, and also removed most of teh tags I had for teh vacuum lines. so I purchased another carb (used pretty beat up lookin) and rebuilt it again. while I was trying to replace teh vacuum lines in order ( not sure if they are right or not) teh vehicle was backfiring HARD, i noticed that teh catalytic converters were turning Bright red in a matter of minutes. so I removed teh cats ( both) and continued with teh carb/vacuum lines and timing. ( forgot to mention in this time I replaced cap, rotor, wires, plugs. )now the car wont start at all, tonight while scratching My (head) looking at teh engine, I decided to try cheching for spark, I removed teh # wire from plug, and held it near teh plug (Head??) while turning her over. this produced a strong spark, and while I was holding the wire, she started and idled rough but better that ever since I started on her, However, while running I attempted to put teh wire back onto teh plug, she died, and wouldnt run, I removed the wire and tried again, watching teh spark, she ran.replaced teh wire to teh plug and she died..................why???
please dont make fun of Me.like I said Im a Carpenter, and pretty good one too, but Im not a mechanic, never claimed to be, yet Im too impovershed to take her to a professional.............can someone help ME
Lost in Az
 
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Old 01-02-06, 05:37 PM
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You gave a really good description! It does sound mysterious. The only thing that you are achieving by holding the plug away from the plug, is to increase the firing voltage for that one plug (say from 8,000 volts to 20,000 volts, more or less). I will explain that later if you like. But for now, I will suggest that you gap all the plugs to specs with a accurate gauge (I like the silver dollar gauge). The plug gap can adversely affect starting spark voltage.

Retrace your plug wire sequence to insure they are correct.

Be sure you have the correct coil if it has been swapped out. The early conventional round coils look exactly like the early capacitive discharge ignition round coils, but they are vastly different. Later coils were square shaped I think. I think you have a capacitive discharge ignition (or whichever name Ford gave to their brand of new high voltage ignitions ). A conventional coil will overheat and burn up and may exhibit other symptoms.
 
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Old 01-05-06, 08:37 AM
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todays story moral is.........never allow a carpenter under teh hood.
I retraced all teh plug wires, and they were all in order, used firing guide on manifold, as well as chiltons.
regaped plugs, all were fouled beyond belief, replaced agfain and regaped
fired up nice, had a real mechanic get under the hood, and readjusted teh carb, (I thought each idle screw was 1 for air, and 2 for fuel, didnt know that each went to either side) Im a carpenter nuf said
well today Ill be getting a new exhaust put on, and hopefully it will pass emissions. Ill let Ya know later tonight.thank You
Carpenter
 
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Old 01-05-06, 01:24 PM
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Im glad that it is running now. I will also point out that your original post said that you 'replaced' the plugs, (i.e. installed new ones). That could (would had) only leave the plug gap as the problem, but of course a fouled plug is the obvious cause. Best wishes and keep on doing your own work. I am glad to hear that you are using a repair manual. That is a good start.

I gots a feeling we'll be hearing from you again as you tinker with it.

Happy Motoring.
 
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